GM And VW Double Down On EVs (At Last)

After making the dumb business decision to crush its much loved ahead-of-the-pack electric cars (EV1) in 2002, GM, along with emission-fraud leader VW, finally, see where the puck is going. Chinese regulations requiring companies to sell a minimum number of zero-emission vehicles to avoid financial penalties are a huge catalyst.

Ford and Toyota are, so far, still doubling down on much-less efficient hybrid models that require batteries and gas-powered engines. Other auto companies are spending an estimated $225 billion to develop more than 200 new purely electric plug-in vehicles through 2023.

With internal combustion engine sales slumping globally, auto companies are in for a tough transition where they must reinvent business models away from reliance on higher-margin internal combustion engine (ICE) sales to EVs with 90% fewer parts and service needs. First, manufacturers will have to give–in terms of investment and fewer near-term profits– to get a viable longer-term business. The race is truly on. See GM, Volkswagon says goodbye to hybrid vehicles:

GM plans to launch 20 fully electric vehicles world-wide in the next four years, including plug-in models in the U.S. for the Chevy and Cadillac brands. Volkswagen has committed billions to producing more battery-powered models, including introducing a small plug-in SUV in the U.S. next year and an electric version of its minibus around 2022.

“If I had a dollar more to invest, would I spend it on a hybrid? Or would I spend it on the answer that we all know is going to happen, and get there faster and better than anybody else?” GM President Mark Reuss said in an interview.

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